Role Model Cristina Solis smiling at camera on pastel background

Role Model:
Cristina Solis

Role Model:
Cristina Solis

Every month we ask one individual in our network a few questions about their way into tech, their motivation and their lessons learned.

Let’s start from the beginning. Tell us about where you’re from!

I am from Mexico, but my journey has taken me across borders. I came to Switzerland for the first time for a year of Gymnasium studies. Upon returning to Mexico, I pursued a Bachelor’s degree in Actuarial Science. It was during this time that my interest in computer science sparked. I took various courses, exploring topics like machine learning and databases, which sparked my passion for technology.

Following my Bachelor’s, I gained invaluable experience in the analytics team of a bank, immersing myself in the dynamic realm of data science in the industry. Fascinated by this, I realised the potential of merging technical skills with interdisciplinary experiences. This led me back to Switzerland, where I embarked on a master’s journey at ETH Zurich.

At ETH, I was exposed to the enormous gamma of opportunities that it has to offer, including an enriching internship at an ETH spin-off as a machine learning engineer. It was during this time where I decided working in a tech startup was my thing.

What valuable advice did you get from your parents?

Growing up with both my mom and dad as doctors, I witnessed firsthand the power of teamwork in both their professional and personal lives. They always operated as equals, setting a remarkable example for me. Their strong work ethic has left a lasting impression on me. Among the many lessons they gave me, two stand out: the importance of surrounding oneself with the right people and the virtues of discipline and consistency.

How did you become interested in tech?

I have always been a problem solver. That, combined with my interest in cool stuff like Data Science and Machine Learning, drew me into the world of tech. Plus, tech is everywhere nowadays, affecting everyone’s day-to-day. So, it was kind of impossible not to get interested!

You are originally from Mexico. Women and tech – are the challenges similar there or do you see differences?

The situation for women in tech in Mexico mirrors what’s seen in many other places. Gender gaps persist, particularly in STEM fields. However, there’s a shift happening. In Mexico and across Latin America, vibrant communities are emerging, uniting women in STEM. I am part of one such community, and it is incredibly empowering. The support, knowledge-sharing, and camaraderie among women in these networks are truly motivating. We come together for various enriching events, creating a space where…

...we uplift and empower each other. It is inspiring to witness so many women sharing experiences and supporting one another on this journey.
Role Model Cristina Solis smiling at camera on pastel background
Cristina Solis
BLP Digital

First job at startup BLP digital machine learning… why a startup and not a corporate?

Prior to joining BLP, I had the opportunity to experience both corporate and startup settings. My journey began in a bank in Mexico before pursuing my master’s degree. It was during this time that I realized my passion for tech and data science. However, it was my internship at a startup that truly resonated with me. The dynamic environment and the ability to collaborate seamlessly across teams were key factors. Unlike the more vertical and rigid nature of corporate roles, startups offer a broader scope where you are not confined to a “null acht fünfzehn” kind of job. It is about seeing the bigger picture and contributing to something greater than just completing daily tasks.

Have you ever had a role model that inspired you on your path?

Rather than having one definitive role model, I draw inspiration from many sources. I believe there is something valuable to learn from every person I encounter. Those I choose to stay connected with are individuals whom I find particularly inspiring, whether they are friends, colleagues, or mentors at work.

Naturally, my parents also play a significant role in shaping my path. It is the collective influence of these diverse individuals that guides and motivates me along my journey.

What aspects of your work are you proudest of?

It is a bit of a hard question. I am proud of my ability to tackle ambiguous challenges and rally individuals around a common project. It is really rewarding to bring order to complex problems, breaking them down into manageable subproblems, and guiding teams towards solutions. The collaborative journey of problem-solving, involving others along the way, is truly fulfilling to me.

What drives you at work?

There are two primary driving forces for me. Firstly, the constant opportunity to learn and grow each day. Being in an environment that fosters rapid development aligned with my aspirations really fuels my passion. Secondly, it is the incredible people I collaborate with. Their dedication and supporting spirit make every challenge worthwhile.

What has been your toughest challenge you faced while working in tech?

In my role within a highly technical team, one of the biggest challenges I have faced has been bridging the gap between our technical domain and the broader business landscape. Effectively translating complex technical concepts into terms that resonate within a business context demands a nuanced understanding of both realms.

Do you have a favorite book or podcast?

I really like Haruki Murakami’s books. “Kafka on the Shore” is one of my favorites.

This book weaves together the lives of two seemingly unrelated protagonists: Kafka Tamura, a fifteen-year-old boy who runs away from home to escape a gruesome prophecy, and Nakata, an elderly man who possesses a unique ability to communicate with cats. As their paths intertwine, the novel unfolds a mesmerizing exploration of identity, memory, love. The enigmatic narrative style creates an immersive experience that challenges the boundaries of conventional storytelling, leaving readers captivated by its enigmatic mysteries long after the final page.

And the podcast Light O’clock, a scientifical, educational and wellness podcast about light exposure and circadian rhythms, I find the topic quite interesting.

What advice would you give other women in tech?

Seek out and connect with fellow women in tech to expand your network. There is immense value in building relationships with inspiring women who share similar experiences and challenges.
Role Model Cristina Solis smiling at camera on pastel background
Cristina Solis
BLP Digital

And what advice would you give women not yet working in tech that want to enter the field?

Have confidence in your skills and abilities. Identify areas of uncertainty and focus on honing those skills. The key is to take that first step and get started!
Role Model Cristina Solis smiling at camera on pastel background
Cristina Solis
BLP Digital

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